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Policing, Culture and Community: Building Trust Through Arts Collaboration

Our research explores the potentials and challenges afforded by arts and culture in the context of a widespread crisis in police legitimacy and in light of the damaged relationships between police and some communities.

We approach this object of study through two lenses: firstly, we look at the opportunities arts-based interventions might offer as a medium for police-community engagement. Here we consider the ways in which creative initiatives can offer a democratising space in which mutual perceptions can begin to shift, and we explore the complexities and challenges of these endeavours. And secondly, we explore the possibilities afforded by the arts for effecting broader change in police practice.  

Our full report into arts-based police-community engagement at Coventry City of Culture 2021 is now available.Link opens in a new window

We’re building further on this research in the coming months: evaluating an outreach programme led by WMP and Ernst and Young for young people at risk of school exclusion and/or involvement in criminal activity; collaborating with the Belgrade Theatre to produce a performance piece based on the findings from our research around young people’s experiences of policing in Coventry; and constructing an empathetic story-telling initiative in which a group of young people share their experiences of policing with frontline officers.

For more information, follow the links below.

This project is led by:

Professor Jacqueline HodgsonLink opens in a new window is Professor of Law and Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) at the University of Warwick. Her work focuses on how the criminal justice process operates in practice in the UK and Europe.

Dr Rachel LewisLink opens in a new window is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Law at Warwick University. She works at the intersections between Law, Sociology, and Applied Linguistics, and focuses on issues around bordering, anxiety, and punishment in the contemporary UK.

Follow us: @PoliceartsLink opens in a new window